The Secretary of State to the Consul at Natal (Jakes)
A–21. Reference your despatch no. 820  of October 16, 1945,78 concerning desire of Natal Naval Base of the Brazilian Navy to purchase surplus property now in the custody of US Army at Parnamirim Field.
Complete authority to handle disposal of US Army and Navy surpluses in the South Atlantic area rests at the present time with the ranking officer of the unit or installation concerned. This will continue to be the case until the Field Commissioner of the Office of the Foreign Liquidation Commissioner arrives in the area. With respect to any specific articles which the Natal Naval Base may wish to purchase from the US Army, these articles must first be declared surplus [Page 648] by the Theater Commander. Any surplus articles not included on the Army–Navy list of critical items, which must be returned to the United States from certain areas if declared surplus in those areas, may be sold on the authority of the ranking US Army officer in the area. Accordingly it is suggested that Captain Goncalves81 be advised to approach the Commanding Officer of the US Army at Parnamirim Field in order to determine whether any of the desired items have been declared surplus in order that he may be notified when any of them are. The Department has no information as to the availability of the articles mentioned.